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tv   The Cycle  MSNBC  June 21, 2013 12:00pm-1:01pm PDT

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yes, it's summertime, and we're an hour before the closing bell. the markets are mixed after thursday's selloff. the markets are mixed right now with the dow and the s&p up only slightly. a far cry from the two-day plunge wednesday and thursday. the dow suffered its biggest loss of the year thursday, wiping out all gains from may and june. remember, just three weeks ago the dow had hit a record high, but then wednesday fed reserve chairman ben bernanke hinted that he'll start to wind down the government's massive money printing program as early as this year, sparking the stack market selloff. so what's it mean for all of us? let's be honest, at the end of the day, that's all that really matters. what it says for us. for answers, let's welcome rick newman, a columnist at yahoo! finance. what happened this week?
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>> stock market went crazy. is that plain enough? >> i like it. >> well, ben bernanke got everybody a little bit nervous. he basically said that the fed didn't change anything this week. what they said is we could begin to scale back this monetary stimulus they've been doing sometime later this year, which most people think means perhaps around december. that's a big deal because for about four years, this has been in place. and this has been a huge factor that has been pushing stock mice prices up and interest rates down. so what investors are interpreting this as meaning is that we're sort of at the beginning of the end of this easy money policy that has been really terrific for investors who have had the guts to be in the stock market lately. so we saw, you know -- all told, the stock market fell by about 4% over the two days following bernanke's remarks. that's not terrible. the stock market is actually still up about 10% this year. i mean, basically, it was a reminder that stocks do go down as well as up. the other thing that people
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really need to be paying attention to, though, is interest rates, which we can talk about if you want. >> well, let's talk about the whole picture. what does all this mean for the average american? >> i don't think it means anything in particular regarding the stock market. this doesn't mean you need to take all your money out of stocks and head for the mattress. the people doing most of the selling are the people who are in it for short-term trade, daily trades, hedge funds and people who profit on a daily or hourly or minute-by-minute basis. what people need to pay more attention to is interest rates, which have actually gone up by quite a lot over a very short period of time. that's going to affect people applying for mortgages and even things like car loans. that is going to change the equation for some people, you know, making big purchase decisions. >> rick, so i have to ask you, is the real reason the market freaked out yesterday was because all this free money was given an end date? i don't know about you, but i'd make a mad dash for cash, too,
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if i saw the vault door closing had an end date finally coming. >> it's important to point out, the free money does not have an end date. what the fed has basically said is, okay, mr. market, you're addicted to monetary stimulus, which we've been happily providing for the last four years, and we're going to start cutting back on the dosage. nobody really knows how dependent stocks are on what the fed has been doing and what is also unknown is whether the economy is going to get strong enough so the real economy, real growth, and profits at companies are going to be strong enough to sort of displace the fed stimulus as it pulls away. the fed has made an important point. if things go south and things turn out to be a lot worse than we think, we don't have do change anything. we can ease up -- >> print more money. >> we can do whatever we want. but that's not the way markets have interpreted this. traders have just ignored all the ifs and buts that bernanke said. they've assumed the fed is going
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to start taking away the medicine. that remains to be seen. >> well, rick, that's the question, right? you talk about this being moved a lot by day traders or etfs. >> and hedge funds. >> is this a judgment that we are running out of value in the underlying markets and the stocks, or is it just a prediction about the future? >> well, it's mostly psychology. i'll tell you that. it is people trying to guess where -- how dependent the stock market is on the fed. it is not anything that's actually happening in the real economy. there has been -- we've had a little bit of disappointing news from china, for example. that's a minor factor. the big thing is investor psychology. people are just worried that the stock market can't stand on its own. i think it's important today, we've seen stocks sort of stabilize. that will make people feel better. it's quite possible -- you know, there are a lot of people sitting there with money on the sidelines saying i'm pretty optimistic about the economy. i'm just waiting for prices to
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call so i can buy the dip, as they say. we may see a little be the of that. what we are going to see this summer is a lot of choppiness, a lot of volatility. if you think the economy is getting better and will continue to get better, this is really nothing to worry about. >> so rick, back to those interest rates. should rates, in your opinion, have been that low in the first place? >> well, there's no doubt they were artificially low. there was no normal reason that interest rates would be as low as 3.2% or 3.3% for a 30-year mortgage. that's almost never happened. undoubtedly, the fed did that, and the fed actually said, that's what we were trying to accomplish. so now the fed has said, maybe we're going to back away from that. everyone who's holding those securities with those low interest rates wants to get rid of them. that's what's pushing interest rates up. it's not -- they're not necessarily going to stay where they are, but they're probably not going back down to those record levels. for mortgage rates, that would be 3.5% or lower. we're probably not going to see that again. if you're in the market for a
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home or a car, you need to just really start paying attention to interest rates and knowing when they go up and when they go down so you can tell when it is a good buying opportunity. >> for folks thinking about their 401(k)s or to invest in gold, what kind of announimpact this announcement have? >> if it's your 401(k), you don't need to worry about that. sit tight. the stock market has been on a great roll. there's great reason to think it will continue at a modest pace. gold is another story. people buy gold when they think there's going to be armageddon or high inflation. one thing that's happening is that the fed is saying they're going to get out of -- they're going to back away from this money printing, if you will, without -- and inflation is very low. there are a lot of people predicted we'd have runaway inflation by now because of this so-called money printing. it hasn't happened. there's no indication it will happen. that's a big reason for the gold selloff.
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you know, the fed looks like it might be getting close to the end of this money printing without this terrible thing that everybody said was going to be a side effect, terrible inflation. so now everyone holding gold, waiting for -- >> end times. >> judgment day, is finding judgment day is a lot longer off than they guessed. you might say it's a good time to buy gold because prices are so low, but that's your call. >> judgment day. judgment day is always farther off than we're told it is. if we're not supposed to -- if you don't advise gold, what do you advise right now? >> i think the advice is just prudent investing like it always has been. spread your bets around. analysts have been saying all year long that if you're invested in low-yielding treasury securities or things like that, you're potentially going to take some losses this year. they were right about that. that's what's been happening. i don't think people should do anything unusual or different. just be comfortable with simple decisions, you know, invest in what you know.
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the stock market will be a good bet if you think the economy is going to improve, but don't put all your money into it at once. do it over time. try to, you know, catch those low points if you think it's a low point. >> prudence from rick newman. thank you very much, sir. up next, let's be honest, if you're going to face white house reporter, you got to get a lit creative. we're going to examine the art of dodging a question. "the cycle" is rolling on with 50 cent on a friday. out there owning it. the ones getting involved and staying engaged. they're not afraid to question the path they're on. because the one question they never want to ask is "how did i end up here?" i started schwab for those people. people who want to take ownership of their investments, like they do in every other aspect of their lives.
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i have an announcement for you. i'm not going to get into policy
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discussions. we can take the question and get back to you. here's what i have to say about the markets and the fed chairman and fed policy. >> that was all today. in fact, according to yahoo! news, he's got 9,486 ways not to give you an answer. kind of jealous. a list compiled by yahoo! news shows a couple of his favorites, including, i would refer you to someone else. you already know the answer to that. the somewhat coy, i'm not going to tell you. and everybody's favorite, i don't have an answer for that. and he had to use more than a few of them while talking around the farm bill's defeat in today's briefing. so what is this week's house vote mean for immigration, and will strong senate republican support for the gang of eight
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force boehner's hand? guys, this farm bill upset was not good news, not confidence inspiring if you believe that some kind of immigration reform should come to be. nancy pelosi, i have to agree with her, she was right. this was amateur hour. her democrats are not spared in that assessment. they promised 40 votes. they only came to the floor with 24. that 40 wouldn't have brought the bill to fruition alone, but could have maybe tipped the scales for a few more gop votes. so they also didn't deliver and seem to have problems counting votes. and to me, it just seems like this is why compromise for the sake of compromise is a real loser. there are reasons to compromise, but compromise alone can't be one of them. boehner brought a bill to the floor that no one liked, right? republicans in the house thought it didn't cut enough. democrats in the house thought
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it cut too much. he should have provided, presented a bill that at least his base was going to support if only to avoid the embarrassment. this is a bill that was going nowhere to begin with. the white house already said they would veto that house version of the farm bill. so you might as well please at least your caucus. >> you know, i'm down here, and people love to count votes down here. that's what everyone does in this town. they make a lot of money off it. what concerned me most about what we saw this week is what's in the bill itself, if you count the actual impact. $21 billion in cuts over ten years to programs that go to people who need help, who need food, who need to take care of their families, and the cutoff for these benefits is very low compared to most people. for a family of three, you have to make under $25,000 a year. that means you're living on about $480 a week if you are the best off in that category. most people, by definition, making far less than that.
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what are the benefits we're talking about for these people, many of who are out of work or underemployed? it comes down to about $15 a week on average for a family of three. $15 a day, i should say. that comes down to $5 a person. i mentioned all the numbers because if you look at that and you look at what was on the table, it's hard to understand why about half of the spending cuts should go against those people unless it's cynical because those people don't have a lot of power. and so when i look at the house republican caucus, i understand the desire to cut spending. we've talked a lot about that, at least since obama's been president. they didn't talk as much about it when they had their party in the white house. but we could have a debate about cutting spending. if cutting spending doesn't mean being a compassionate hawk. obviously, you have to vote it down. john boehner's back there. he's not good at his job. he's not good at satisfying the most uncompassionate about in
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his caucus, so i'm glad he lost. i hope they learned something from this. it's ultimately about the effect on people in the country, not just counting votes here. >> ari, speaking of speaker boehner, we just showed a clip of him, he said something in his speech i thought was interesting. he said, quote, government is out of control. i think that's rich because, you know, the failure of the farm bill shows that speaker boehner has no control over his caucus whatsoever. this is not the first time he's brought a bill to the floor that has gone down faster than the hindenberg, which we didn't see when nancy pelosi was speaker. that gets to my larger point here, which is while i'll put speaker boehner under the red hot lights of criticism, his leadership team also should be criticized. i'm talking about house majority leader eric cantor, but in particular, house majority whip kevin mccarthy.
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his sole job is to count votes. his sole job is to tell the speaker, mr. speaker, we have enough votes to bring this bill to the floor, let's do it. not to embarrass the speaker. either kevin mccarthy can't count, or he doesn't have the speaker's best interests at heart or both. i'm siding with both. >> right, so we can't take all three? so to go back to the original question, what does this say for immigration, i'm extraordinarily pessimistic about the future of this immigration reform bill. i don't think the house republicans are going to support it. this is a body that just passed a measure making it a federal crime to be an undocumented person in america, going against the ruling that being undocumented in america performing work is not illegal, even in your status is. really, what we're talking about is a group of people who the basis of their opposition to this reform isn't really pragmatic, it's emotional. they're afraid of how the country will change and is
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changing as it gets browner and what they're proposing is almost like america's answer to the berlin wall. despite the fact that massive economic progress will be made in america by legalizing 11 million folks, allowing them to make more money, allowing them to may more revenue, the cbo just told us this is a massic economic boom for us, yet what are we going to do? >> cbo also said that this was only going to eliminate 25% of illegal immigration. the cbo has constantly adjusted its numbers when it scores other huge policy and legislation efforts like the affordable care act. so excuse me for not believing them. also, it's not just a group of people worried about the browning of america. it's a group of people who like 67% of the country are worried about border security. that is a huge part of the concern for immigration reform. you have a group of people who
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want to legalize, who want to make the immigration process easier to come here legally. you cannot discount or cry racism every time someone says, well, wait a second, i have a question about that immigration proposal. >> sure. se, i think that's a fair point. this is a debate where you have people who have strong views on immigration that don't just come from nativism. we should be respectful to that. to raise question, though, yes, the difference here between immigration and this debate we had on the farm bill is there are probably the votes on the floor. the question is whether democracy is going to work back here or not. you can get that alliance, just like some people have been saying you could cut some of the spending out of the farm bill if you found the alliance of people who want to cut all the corporate subsidies. there's some of that on the left an the right. instead, they went after food stamps. i thought that was wrong. if we can get a majority vote on the house floor on immigration, i think it gets through. the question is whether we will let john boehner decide after all the problems we just
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elucidated about him, whether he also gets to decide that yet again majority rule doesn't happen in this town. i think that's what people are frustrated with around the country. >> yeah, i think you're right. all right. straight ahead, ari and michael tweet cutting analysis of the nba finals. this is going to be good. >> no, they didn't. >> don't forget, luke russert makes his debut at "the cycle" table all next week. don't miss it. (announcer) scottrade knows our clients trade and invest their own way. with scottrade's smart text, i can quickly understand my charts, and spend more time trading. their quick trade bar lets my account follow me online so i can react in real-time. plus, my local scottrade office is there to help. because they know i don't trade like everybody. i trade like me. i'm with scottrade. (announcer) scottrade. voted "best investment services company."
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sports is dominating our friday news cycle. star patriots tight end aaron hernandez visited with his attorney this morning. police are investigating him in connection with the death of a semi-pro player near his home. a jogger discovered the body on monday. the miami heat are back-to-back nba champions after knocking off the spurs in last night's game seven. michael steele and i were tweeting the whole game. >> yes, they were. >> that happened.
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>> yeah. >> anyway, king james finished with 37 points and his second straight mvp title. i'm sure they're still partying on south beach. the official parade is monday morning. we may have seen the catch of the year at thursday's twins/red sox game. the ball boy caught a line drive, saving fans in the stands from being hit. the white sox, of course, are in last place, and the twins are in fourth. maybe the coach should put that guy in. we have all kinds of sports tips. now, all political attention on the president and congress. it is often the unelected branch of government that has the final word on some of our largest disputes. it's going to have that final word on four major cases. we have decisions expected as early as next week. some controversies are, of course, unavoidable for the court. our next guest says the dynamics of the roberts court has made it unusually powerful. we're talking factors like an inactive congress, the court's
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assertive approach to choosing certain cases. our supreme court correspondent joins us now. he's a 2009 pulitzer prize finalist. thanks for being here. >> great to be here. >> i want to start with a case that it looks like the supreme court will hear in its next term, we just learned. it's going to take a program to counter racism and housing that 11 appeals courts have said is type. it's going to actually review the constitutionality of that program. it fits with some of the race and equality cases wea we've be talking about. why is the roberts court so assertive? >> it does seem somehow to jump in the middle of almost every major social controversy. so it's about to decide same-sex marriage, affirmative action, voting rights, and now, as you say, fair housing and whether in a fair housing case as the lower courts generally say you can use statistics to prove disparate
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impact. >> how does an inactive congress make the court more powerful? >> well, the court does two kinds of cases. sometimes it decides what the constitution says. that's the last word. sometimes it just decides what a statute means. if it gets it wrong, congress is free to come back and overrule the court by just passing a new statute. of course, a polarized, gridlocked congress that doesn't pass any statutes makes the court even stronger in statutory cases too. >> put this in perspective as it pertains to that health care ruling. justice kennedy said of that decision in the minority descent that in calling the health care mandate a tax, he essentially -- the majority engaged in vast judicial overreach and decided to save a statute that congress did not write. is that what you're talking about here? >> that may be an aspect of it. the descent generally finds something wrong with the approach of the majority, as
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justice kennedy did there. >> adam, to my understanding, the supreme court justices are not supposed to be politicized, but it seems like we have a mini senate that's divided 5-4, so many of the ruling fall along those conservative, liberal lines. is that because an outgrowth of hyperpolarization in politics leads to that? is that the reason why we have that? is that hurting the process with the court? >> well, it's possible to overstate it. remember, only about 20% of the cases are 5-4. not all of them spin out ideologically. the biggest ones do tend to. these days, for the first time in decades, it also splits along the lines of which president appointed which justice. all of the five more conservative justices were appointed by republican presidents. all of the five more liberal ones by democrats. that gives rise to the feeling among some that the court is politicized. >> so adam, let me pick up on what you were just telling jonathan. sometimes there's a conversation between the court and congress
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when it's a statutory question. basically, congress says something in a law. the court says, that's not good enough but you can do more. you can change it. next week, a lot of people expect there to be some kind of limitation on the voting rights act, which was passed in '64, reauthorized unanimously in the senate just a few years ago. what might congress be able to do if there is a limitation but they actually want to respond to the court and save certain aspects of that approach, which many people feel is important because it counters voter suppression, including racist voter suppression. >> one likely outcome in the court, based on the argument, the court may well say, we're okay with the voting rights act, but we're not okay with which states are covered. congress relied on decades' old data to decide which states require federal oversight. it may say to congress, listen, if you guys want to use contemporary data to decide which states ought to be covered today, that may well be okay. that would kick it back to
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congress. that would pose the interesting question of whether this congress is willing and able to look at contemporary data to figure out where the voting rights act needs to have a special kind of federal oversight. >> we talk about this in modern court. the person i find the most fascinating is justice kennedy, the decider. he was appointed by a republican president, but he's much more swingy than you would expect. talk about how he is central to what this court does and doesn't do. >> well, this next week we'll probably get three of the four cases decided 5-4. i would guess only justice kennedy will be in the majority in all of them. so he very much holds the fate of the entire nation in his hands. and he's got strong views that generally tilt right, but in some areas, and i think gay rights may well will one of them, tilt left. >> adam, one final question. how cranky was the court over getting a case such as the prop 8 case? some of the commentary around
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the time of arguments was this was something the court didn't want to have to deal with right now. >> well, the court's procedures occasionally put them in a bind because it takes four votes to grant a case, five votes to decide it. there was some dsignificant sene it was the conservatives who tried to jam this down justice kennedy's throat to try to say, not only are we going to take a more modest same-sex marriage case, but we're going to take the big one too, prop 8, and force you to decide. i'm not sure we'll get an actual decision out of him. >> that's interesting, yeah, that the idea you might get the case before the court and kennedy would be moved to action although he's proved himself to be pretty independent. adam, thanks for joining us today. >> great to be here. >> all right. and we'll be keeping an eye on court monday and possibly wednesday and thursday of next week. up next, however, how junk food can end obesity.
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myself excluded, plenty of americans will be trading in their blazers for beach ware as the summer season kicks off. the perfect beach body takes work, mainly exercise and eating right. it's that last part that proves difficult for so many, especially those who don't have access to healthy food choices. a recent study focused on the baltimore area found a low availability of healthy foods in nearly half of low-income neighborhoods. that leaves fast food as the only affordable option for many people. but there's some new food for thought on tackling weight loss in america. though you may find it hard to digest at first, junk food to end obesity, that's the premise "the atlantic's" latest cover story. david freeman is a contributor. please explain in three sentences how grazing at the golden arches is healthier than
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lining up at chopped. >> look, people love fat, sugar and salt. they get lots of it in processed foods. the fact of the matter is the junk food companies know how to make food that has less of that stuff but that still tastes great, it's convenient, and it's cheap. we need to get them to make more of it. >> now it's time to talk about the vegan cheesy salad booster. i know you know what i'm talking about. we even have a little picture of it. there's your vegan cheesy salad booster. it's a beautiful product for you vegans out there. you point out in your article it has three times the fat and four times the sodium of a big mac beef patty. what's up with that? >> this is one of the big problems. we hear said again and again by lots of people that the solution to the obesity crisis is to get everybody eating so-called wholesome food, farm fresh, organic, notn-gm food. the problem is, a lot of this
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stuff is loaded with fat, sugar, and problem carbs. let's eat food low in fat and sugar. a lot of that is processed food. >> it looks like folks like mcdonald's are maybe starting to respond to that gap in the marketplace for folks who can't afford, say, wholefoods, but still want maybe a healthy option at their local fast food place. ic -- i think this is a really courageous piece. i'm going to quote you back to you, which is weird. you write f the most influential voices in our food culture today get their way, we'll achieve a genuine food revolution. too bad it would be one tailored to the dubious health fantasies of a small, elite minority, and too bad it would largely exclude the obese masses who would continue to sicken and die early. you know, i've always said that when green energy is cheap and efficient, it will be our major source of energy. when healthy food is cheap, it
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will be what we all eat. but in addition to seeming to ignore free market, some of your wholesome food advocates seem to ignore the science of, say, processed food and what is and isn't good for you. >> yeah, they sure do. there's really virtually no scientific evidence that unprocessed food is healthier in any significant way than processed food, if they have equal amounts of fat, sugar, and sat, which they often do. there's really just a lot of wishful thinking here, this idea that if it's natural, if must be good for you. doesn't matter how much fat is in it, as long as it comes from a local farm, it's good for you. there's no science in that. >> that's a limited resource, right? we don't have enough natural stuff to feed everyone. >> well, it's a good thing that you don't suddenly have most of america demanding this stuff because if we did, we wouldn't be able to get it to more than a tiny fraction of them. look, i think it's great that
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people eat this stuff. i eat a lot of the wholesome stuff. sure, it tastes better, it's great. let's support our local farms. realistically, it's a very elitist thing. it's for people with lots of resources, not for most americans. >> yep. >> not really sure what we're talking about here, david. you say fast food purveyors could be better. you say that there are healthy options at some of our fast food purveyo purveyors, which are true, but they're also really good at marketing, not just telling us how great their bourbon burger is going to be and flashing pictures of it all over the place, but putting things in there like salt and sugar that make people want it. just because healthy options are cheaper or available doesn't mean that they will go to those things. so i'm not really sure how this is any sort of solution for people who live in food deserts where it's very, very difficult to get access to healthy foods. >> you're right. and two big problems we have to
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solve is, one, we have to get the big food companies, mcdonald's and the whole industry, to not merely offer some of these healthy options, but to make them taste really good to people who now eat junk food, number one. number two, they have to market them heavily. mcdonald's has not done that yet. now, it's true when they market something as healthy, it tends to turn people off. they have to find some way to sell this, and we got to put pressure on them to do it. >> david, how do you do that? you're just saying you got to get mcdonald's to do x, y, z. one, how do you get them to do that? if these foods are healthier and cheaper, why can't we get more companies to join in? >> and so first of all, we are starting to see more companies joining in. so the movement's in the right direction, and they're not getting enough credit for it. they've got to go a lot further. the way we can get them to do it, there's several ways, actually. one is we have to start getting over our fear of regulating anything and have some
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regulation of fast food companies. maybe it's in the form of incentives for healthier foods. maybe it's penalties for less healthy foods. let's keep up the bad pr for these companies until they offer more of this stuff. the other thing we really need to do is when a mcdonald's offers this stuff, let's reward them by actually eating there. >> david friedman, thanks for your time. >> thank you. so here's what we want to know. would you opt for a healthier option at a fast food restaurant? jacob says the answer should always be yes, too bad it's the naughty food that brought me there. like us on facebook and check out what happened when i tried to outdo toure on instagram's new video service. >> what is that? when we come back, what if you lost your father, only then to find out about his secret past in military special operations? we'll talk to the author of as if nating new novel inspired by that event. cs, you know. i got this.
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to prove to you that aleve is the better choice for him, he's agreed to give it up. that's today? [ male announcer ] we'll be with him all day as he goes back to taking tylenol. i was okay, but after lunch my knee started to hurt again. and now i've got to take more pills. ♪ yup. another pill stop. can i get my aleve back yet? ♪ for my pain, i want my aleve. ♪ [ male announcer ] look for the easy-open red arthritis cap. if you're right, the whole world's going to want in on this. >> you will never find him. he is one of the disappeared ones.
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>> the raid that killed bin laden was a central moment in modern american history. naturally, artists would begin using it in their work. film makers were the first ones in. now come the novelists. a novel about a navy s.e.a.l. and his mother. the journey to this book began four years ago after her father died and she discovered he had been in special military ops. it brought her here, lea carpenter, the author of "11 days." in 2009, your dad dies, and you discover he was not who you completely knew him to be. how did that change your life, and how did that lead to this book? >> well, it's slightly less
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dramatic than that, but i will say this, after he died -- i knew he was in the military, but i was born when he was in his mid-50s. by the time i was old enough to ask him, you know, what do you do, i never thought to say, what did you do 40 years ago? i was just a narcissistic teenager who wanted to talk about today and tomorrow. i was also a girl growing up in peacetime. i didn't really think a lot about wars. i certainly didn't think a lot about special operations. i knew he'd served in world war ii and two days after he died, just before christmas in 2008, a friend of ours came to the house who worked in national intelligence, and he brought with him the former chief justice of the u.s. court of appeals for the armed forces, something i probably didn't even know existed. they showed us one document -- i ended up seeing a lot of other things, but the one document they brought us was a declassified bronze star citation of something my father had been involved with. in there was this phrase special
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operations. i hadn't thought about it in the context of my father before. i started reading about the military. knowing a few people serving in these wars, i was interested in this story of who did special operations mean in world war ii down through vietnam and what is it today. i started writing in april 2011 sort of on a dare from a friend. this was sort of an obscure subject, naval special warfare. a month later it was less obscure. >> then it was everywhere. everyone was talking about it. >> you know, i wanted to write about the humanity and humility of these people, but suddenly history also handed me this event, so i had to find out -- i don't think i could have written the book without dealing with that event in some way. so i chose to deal with it by setting the book on a similar timeline, but the book is about what goes on inside the mind of a mother in the 11 days following that. >> when you talk about the mu manty of these people, you've read so much and obviously your
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father and your father-in-law as marines, so you're getting close in lots of different ways to people who are able to be in these elite military groups. what sort of people are they? you sort of unearthed they are more complex than we realize. >> they're human. that's the simple revelation. this generation of veterans is the greatest generation, not only because they have the skills, but because they have the ethos. i think anyone who served this country deserved to be called a member of the greatest generation, but part of the mythology about the greatest generation has to do with their humility and their not talking about their service and their sense of duty. these guys have that also. >> a friend of yours in intelligence told you, look, lea, don't make it too gooey. you talk about the sentimentalization of this. what does that mean, exactly? >> that's a great question.
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i went to talk to a friend of mine who had served in the intelligence community. i said, do you have any thoughts on this sort of tone of the book? i read a lot of military memoirs in history. it's a genre of people writing about their service, of great historians, many more talented writers have gone this way before me, but i wanted to get the tone right and also try and play with that tone a little bit. he said, just don't make it gooey. you know, these guys don't want to be mythologized. i think the tone of the book, if i got it right, is reverent but spare and not hopefully overly sentimental. mark bowden, who wrote "blackhawk down," when that came out in paperback, he did an incredible afterward that's a mini essay on war literature.
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had a huge impact on me because he writes about the pressures to write with certain tonality when you're writing about war, whether it's writing with irony or writing with sentimentality or overreference. certainly as a civilian, treading on that subject overreserverence. treading on that subject is a little scary. there are phenomenally talented warriors coming from these wars that are starting to write fiction about it. i think my father feeling that connected gave me the courage to try something i otherwise would have probably said oik i'm up to that. >> speaking of your father. in the sort of at the end of the last segment, i talked about his secret past and when you came on the set, you said there's a distinction between secret versus nondiscussed. talk about that and talk about why -- you said before you were a narcissistic teenager. do you think if you had asked him, what he discuss it with
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you? >> i appreciate you bringing up that distinction. i think certainly from my immediate family members if we talked about my father's secret past, there would have been some pushback on that. i think it was his private past. he was a private person generally and most of the people i've met in this line of work, not just navy seals but people who have served in the special operations are private and pride themselves on that. i think when i was little, my father was deeply literary. he read us greek myths in the morning and recited poetry at night. had i some friends looking this an early draft of this book over. the one civilian who looked it over said there's too much poetry. these guys don't go around quoting tenison. i wanted to talk to him about literature and history. i didn't understand talking to
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him about military history. by the time i could have formulated those questions, it was too late. so the book was my chance to look at that. >> you talk about being reverent but spare in the propose. how does the it work within the book and the reaction. we salute the people who risk their lives for us. did you worry at any time about the real world reaction to your depiction of these heroes? >> i did and i do. i mean, the book was just published a few days ago. i'm only now learning what the rest of the world thinks. i tried to write a book with integrity about people that i know well. it was their reactions ta mattered the most to me. they were only the one who's wanted it the least gooey. any other positive reactions are gravy from my point of view.
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>> that's right. that's all you can do. lea carpenter congratulations on having a great review. still ahead, tony soprano and and what it means to be a modern man. have a good night. here you go. you, too. i'm going to dream about that steak. i'm going to dream about that tiramisu. what a night, huh? but, um, can the test drive be over now? head back to the dealership? oh, yeah.
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these could be signs of rare but serious side effects. is your cholesterol at goal? ask your doctor about crestor. [ female announcer ] if you can't afford your medication, astrazeneca may be able to help. death just shows the ultimate absurdity of life. >> what is this? are you trying to get me to lose my temper because i'm about to put you through that god damn window. >> see, that's what i mean. >> hello. what do you think education is? you just make more money. this is education.
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>> do you ever think like, why are we born? >> in life one must choose between boredom and suffering. >> go to your room. >> tony soprano was an old school guy and a shifting world. you could almost see the earth moving beneath his feet. we're long past the old school of masculinity. manhood shifted to something gentler trying to learn to deal with feelings which is tough for a lot of men but especially so for the depressed maffeiio so whose view of what means to be a man is not quite modern. >> whatever happened to gary cooper? the strong silent type? >> that was an american. he wasn't in touch with his feelings. he just did what he had to do. once they got gary coopner touch with his feelings, they wouldn't be able to shut him up and it's dysfunction this and that. >> at work too the ground was moving underneath his feet.
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globalization and a shift into information age have led to so many american men losing strength that work used to give them. in tony's particular line of work, things are no longer so profitable. the mafia ain't what it used to be in the real world and so it is in media where michael corleone was an epic mob o mobster in the godfather. tony arrived alongside godfather 3 as a mob boss residing over the end of the party. before tony, you invited characters into your home via your television because you loved them. the spoens changed the game. now tv is filled with anti-heroes from walter white to don draper to dexter morgan. tony was tv's first epic anti-hero, a villain we could understand to his core a man we could care about as he killed, lied and cheated on his wife. he was a morally contemptible protagonist. it worked with him. part of the genius goes to creator david case but tony
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could not have been possible without jim gandolfini, the brando of the small screen. tony could have been a character ca tour but he was rich. could he have gotten lost in the world leaving him behind and too challenging for an actor who mass to juggle three worlds that push him to the brink in different ways who has to manage being enraged in one moment and confused in another. he made it look easy. he surely had the instrument for it with a large towering body, expressive eyes and a way of breathing that made him seem constantly on the verge of a heart attack. jim had great respect for tony. the malproppisms could have drowned a lesser actor, but jim pulled it off as tony once said, revenge is like serving cold cuts. he once expressed his agreement with rick sannytorium and the famous quote why can't we always just get along to rodney king junior. they were the center of one of the greatest shows in tv
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history, a show that i think chaed tv forever. neither tony soprano nor jim gandolfini will ever be forgotten. it's time for martin. >> that's a lovely eulogy. thank you, too your ray. it's friday, june 21st. welcome to the summer solstice, the longest day of the year. just ask speaker boehner. >> i didn't come here to be speaker because i need aid fancy title and a big office. >> we have a disaster. >> it's a bunch of malarky. >> how we intend to proceed on immigration. >> idiots like paul ryan will vote for you. >> an that's a spanish word. >> the bill is not passed. >> what an indictment. >> i almost feel bad for baner. >> major amateur hour. >> there was never intention for our side to say we wanted to take away the safety net. >> the republicans inability to give a majority vote


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